Wayzata Student Wins Statewide Video Contest on Dangers of Vaping
Ashley Zhou, a 9th grader from Wayzata High School, won the inaugural ‘Escape the Vape’ contest.
The contest was a collaboration between CCF Advertising, the Minnesota Department of Health, Tobacco-Free Alliance, Masonic Cancer Center–University of Minnesota, Minnesota Youth Council, Minnesota Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics, and Allina Health Change to Chill
In the contest, Minnesota high school students were invited to create and submit a 30-second Public Service Announcement to educate their peers about the dangers of vaping. The contest launched in January and drew 110 entries.
Ashley Zhou wanted to enter because she saw the project as a good combination of her two interests, stopping students from vaping and video production.
“Vaping is Not Sweet” is trying to say it’s not as safe or as amazing as the agencies would like it to seem,” said Zhou, who compared the colors and packaging of vaping products to candy in her video. “I don’t think the video is going to stop anyone from vaping, but I think it will bring up an issue and help facilitate more discussion about the topic, and that leads to people stopping vaping,” said Zhou.
She crafted her message with an Easter egg too–the two characters Nick and Tina are spin on the word “nicotine.”
The Minnesota Youth Council, which is a statewide group of youth leaders who work to create equitable systems through youth-led outreach, education and advocacy, selected the five finalists. Then, online public voting in March chose the winning submissions. Zhou won $1,000 for first place, which will be split 50/50 between Ashley and Wayzata High School.
“What I loved is the range of creativity that the students showed,” said Rob Rankin, president of CCF Advertising.
Rankin says the contest hoped to use youth to empower other youth.
“They are literally coaching each other,” said Rankin. ” The whole premise there is they are going to trust their friends more than they trust us. They are more likely to to embrace the words and wisdom of their peers and that message goes so much further.”
To see more of the winning videos, click here.
g has done to teen health. Learn more and join the cause at MNEscapeTheVape.com.